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Old Apr 16, 2003, 11:46 AM   #1
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Default best resolution

I have an olympus stylus 300, i was wondering what the best resolution i should use to take pictures im going to be making 4x6 out of. Its it better to use the highest resolution setting and then just print them out in 4x6, or will i get the same quality from a lower setting. Im not quite clear on how the whole resolution size of the picture thing works. Any light shedding would be great, thanks.
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Old Apr 16, 2003, 12:15 PM   #2
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The square root of the number pixels divided by the size of intended picture in inches. I use 5 for a 6x4 as 5x5 is nearly the same - easier sums.

So a 3.2mp camera would go like this SQR 3000000 = 1789

1789/5 = 358 pixels per inch

Try to get 300 pixels per inch as a rule of thumb

Try printing sizes giving 150 ppi upto 300 ppi and see what you're willing to settle for.
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Old Apr 16, 2003, 6:27 PM   #3
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you just made no sense to me, i think the real question is, will a 5 megapixel 4x6 look better then lets say a 3 megapixel 4x6?
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Old Apr 16, 2003, 6:54 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chaskinator
you just made no sense to me, i think the real question is, will a 5 megapixel 4x6 look better then lets say a 3 megapixel 4x6?
Scaled down to 4x6, probably not. At 8x10 or larger, you could see a difference.
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Old Apr 16, 2003, 7:19 PM   #5
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Quote:
Try to get 300 pixels per inch as a rule of thumb
That's (6X300) X (4X300) = 2.16 Mpixels

If your camera has resolution options, multiply the height pixels by horizontal and we're saying you need a minimum 2.16Mpix for 6X4

Say you want a pic twice as big (12X8) to still print at the same sharpness level of 300 dpi (since you have 'magnified' the image), you will need (12x300) x (8X300) = 8.64Mpix. So your camera isn't as good as this? and you will have to settle for a lower than 300 resolution. (which you can work back from the camera pixels).

Now for the printer. They use techniques called resolution enhancement or interpolation. By taking the average of 2 pixels they can add an estimated 1/2/or'X' in between. So you get 3 4 or x for the price of 2! Great if your missing information is predictable.

So when your print menu says 1200 dpi don't think you're always getting something for nothing - its a bit like saying I'm making my 2Mpix cam, 8Mpix after shooting with a few software tricks!

So what we said was, work to a print resolution of about 300 dots per inch if you can. Then it's up to you how much more you think the printer is good at 'filling in' to give the illusion of better resolution - and how long you're prepared to wait for the print and speed of your pc!

The golden rule is shoot at the highest resolution and quality your cam will do for the memory size you can afford, provided the cam is still fast enough. You never know when you might need that BIG print! You can always reduce resolution, but never put it back.
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Old Apr 17, 2003, 1:23 AM   #6
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Back to your original question, a 4x6 will use the same number of pixels whether it is shot in 2mp or even 20 mp. The only difference is the 20mp, or even 3 mp will let you crop and give you a lot more room to edit than a 2mp camera. If you just plan on printing the pics out with no cropping, by all means shoot in 2mp, but if you want to be able to print a larger size, or crop the image, shoot in 3. Just remember:
memory: cheap
being able to play around with and crop a great photo: priceless
cameras, sponsors of fond memories all over the world 8)
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Old Apr 17, 2003, 1:41 AM   #7
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Default This is the proper resolution

My HiTi 630-PS is a 300dpi 4x6" printer. The manual says that the best res to shoot at is 1600x1200.

This is the maximum pic size of a 2MP camera.

Hope this helps.

Ed
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Old Apr 20, 2003, 5:18 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ardvark50
Back to your original question, a 4x6 will use the same number of pixels whether it is shot in 2mp or even 20 mp. The only difference is the 20mp, or even 3 mp will let you crop and give you a lot more room to edit than a 2mp camera. If you just plan on printing the pics out with no cropping, by all means shoot in 2mp, but if you want to be able to print a larger size, or crop the image, shoot in 3. Just remember:
memory: cheap
being able to play around with and crop a great photo: priceless
cameras, sponsors of fond memories all over the world 8)
Hi ardvark50

Just to confirm, are you sure a 4x6 will use the same number of pixels if its shot in 2mp or even 20 mp.

A 2mp camera would produce a 4x6 at around 300dpi so wouldent a 5mp camera produce a 4x6 at around 450dpi, so offering greater detail in the picture? Or do the high street photo labs not develop pictures higher than 300dpi?


Thanks
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Old Apr 20, 2003, 5:53 PM   #9
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I'm pretty sure that 300 dpi is all that is used about now. Also, if you look at some of the prints made at about 300 dpi, they look almost like film and thus any extra dpi would seem for the most part to be overkill. Also, everything i've heard says that when printing 4x6, they just use a section of the photo that is 1200x1600, which is why the extra resolution is good if you want to crop your images since the same number of pixels will be used in the print, but on a larger image, you have more selection of which 1200x1600 pixels are used. In the end however, I'd get extra memory and use 3mp so that the option of cropping is available, or so that if i get the shot of a life time, i could get it in 8x10. But for 4x6, 2mp will suit your needs just fine.
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Old Apr 20, 2003, 6:59 PM   #10
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Cropping is the difference... If you plan on printing all the pixels you shoot, anything over a couple of MP will do just fine for 4X6s and even bigger.

My big zoom Canon Pro90 (or the Oly 2100UZ Uzi) does just fine because I "crop" with the zoom lens. Picture composition is probably at the heart of the art of photography and cropping can help a lot.
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